Jacky was just 23 and beaten down when she came to House of Hope last spring. She had grown up in Orange County, an only child with loving parents. Despite the trappings of a good childhood and family, her story is a familiar one of manipulation, denial, increasing drug and alcohol use, and repeated failed attempts at sobriety.
At 13, Jacky started using pot. Feeling peer pressure in high school led her to hard drugs and drinking, selling weed, and finally expulsion. She moved to the Bay Area where her addiction took off. Because she couldn’t hold down school or part-time jobs, her parents suspected continuing drug use and insisted she move back home. They all agreed if she stayed clean, stayed in school, and worked, she could live at her parents’ house. But Jacky started using again. She convinced her parents her issues were psychological, not drugs.
One night her father found her in bed with a needle in her arm. Her parents had had enough. They helped her find an outpatient treatment program, but she was discharged early because she tested unclean.
During another try at outpatient, a counselor recommended residential treatment at House of Hope and Jacky’s mom, Kim, looked it up online. Following her interview, Jacky agreed to enter the House even though she was very nervous for it brought back all those adolescent fears of not fitting in. Everyone at the House seemed so happy, which initially freaked her out. Working the program did not come easily to Jacky, but after two months she began to feel a change and started to take the program more seriously. She recognized that her druggie friends on the outside were stuck and she knew that she didn’t want to live that way anymore.
In Process Group and Family Night, she found she could open up to let the women at the House and her parents in. The walls were coming down and she could grow and relearn to love. She has taken on meaningful projects and plans to go back to school.
Today, she attributes her growth to the program at House of Hope. “If it worked for me, it could work for anybody.”
A recovering alcoholic, Kim knew the dangers of addiction and feared for her daughter, Jacky. “It’s so hard when it’s your own child.” She wanted to believe Jacky when she said that the problem was mental health issues not drugs, but Jacky kept testing dirty even after the first intensive outpatient program. Kim was scared – scared to believe the truth and scared to give her daughter an ultimatum.
When Jacky moved into House of Hope, Kim knew it was the right place, a strong 90-day program “where women save other women.” At Family Night, Kim and her husband could listen to their daughter, praise her, and let her know how frightening it had been for them as parents. As she sees Jacky growing stronger and stronger, she urges her to “stay, stay, stay,” not rush on with her life, but follow what she has learned at House of Hope.